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Road Trip by Van the Thrills of Derby, Tasmania: An Adrenalin Seeker's Paradise

Updated: Dec 19, 2023

Greetings fellow adventurers! Today, I'm thrilled to share the enchanting tale of my journey to Derby, a hidden gem nestled in the heart of Tasmania. Known for its picturesque landscapes, adrenaline-pumping mountain biking trails, and unique attractions, Derby promises an unforgettable experience for those seeking adventure and tranquility alike.


Option 1 - Mountain Biking Extravaganza

Blue Derby Mountain Bike Trails solo biker going down a mountain in tasmania
Credit: Revolution MTB

Mountain biking in Derby, Tasmania, is an unparalleled adventure set against the breathtaking backdrop of the Blue Derby Trails. Boasting a meticulously designed network, these trails cater to riders of all skill levels, offering an array of experiences from gentle slopes for beginners to heart-pounding descents and jumps for the seasoned experts.


The trails wind through the picturesque Tasmanian wilderness, providing an immersive encounter with the region's natural beauty. Carefully maintained and regularly upgraded, the trails are a testament to Derby's commitment to delivering a world-class mountain biking experience, attracting enthusiasts from around the globe. Derby's mountain biking scene is not merely about the thrilling descents; it's a cultural phenomenon that has transformed the town into a haven for biking enthusiasts.


With events like the Blue Derby Pods Ride and various competitions, Derby pulsates with the energy of passionate riders, and the community actively supports this vibrant culture. Local businesses offer bike hire, guided rides, and shuttle services, ensuring that everyone, from novices to seasoned riders, can partake in the two-wheeled adventure. Derby's mountain biking ecosystem seamlessly blends adrenaline, natural beauty, and community spirit, making it a must-visit destination for anyone seeking an unforgettable biking experience.

Blue Derby Mountain Bike Trails
Credit: Stu Gibson

Derby Tunnel


The Derby Tunnel, a historic marvel nestled in the heart of Tasmania's mining legacy, serves as a captivating portal to the past. Carved through the rugged terrain, this railway tunnel was a vital component of Tasmania's tin mining industry in the early 20th century. Today, it stands as a unique and atmospheric passage for adventurers exploring the picturesque town of Derby.

Blue Derby Mountain Bike Trails drone photo near lake
Credit: Jason Charles Hill

Approximately 200 meters in length, the tunnel's cool, dimly lit interior transports visitors into a bygone era, allowing them to marvel at the craftsmanship of its construction and reflect on the industrious history that shaped the region. Bikers, hikers, and history enthusiasts alike are drawn to the Derby Tunnel, not only for the thrill of traversing its subterranean expanse but also for the palpable connection it provides to Tasmania's rich mining heritage.


Option 2 - Serenity in the (Floating) Sauna


Derby's floating sauna is a unique and serene retreat, providing an unparalleled relaxation experience amidst the natural beauty of Tasmania. Anchored on a tranquil body of water surrounded by towering eucalyptus trees, this wood-fired sauna offers an intimate escape from the bustling world. The floating design adds an extra layer of tranquility, as the gentle movement of the water beneath creates a soothing ambiance. Visitors can bask in the warmth of the sauna while enjoying panoramic views of the surrounding wilderness, creating a harmonious blend of therapeutic heat and nature's serene embrace. It's an oasis for weary adventurers seeking respite after a day of exploring Derby's exhilarating mountain biking trails and scenic wonders.

Relaxing couple enjoying the views on the lake at Floating Sauna Lake Derby
Credit: Jason Charles Hill

Operated by dedicated locals, the floating sauna experience extends beyond its therapeutic benefits. It reflects Derby's commitment to sustainable tourism and community-driven initiatives. The sauna exemplifies a harmonious integration of modern wellness concepts with the pristine natural surroundings, providing an eco-friendly and rejuvenating escape for visitors. As you unwind in the floating sauna, you not only pamper your senses but also contribute to the preservation of Derby's unique environment and the flourishing community spirit that defines this Tasmanian gem.


Option 3 - Exploring the Surrounding Wonders

Aerial of Road trip photo in a van going through Weldborough Rainforest Pass
Credit: Jason Charles Hill

Derby isn't just about mountain biking; it's a gateway to a world of natural wonders. The Weldborough Pass Rainforest, a short drive away, immerses you in a lush green paradise with ancient myrtle trees and diverse flora. The Blue Tier Giant Walk, a breathtaking treetop walkway, offers panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes.


Hikers couple exploring and looking at the tall St. Columba Falls in Tasmania together on a rainy day
Credit: Jason Charles Hill

Venture further to Halls Falls and St. Columba Falls, where the sound of cascading water becomes a symphony. Halls Falls, is a hidden gem that enchants visitors with its cascading beauty. The falls, framed by verdant rainforest vegetation, create a serene atmosphere as water gracefully flows over moss-covered rocks, creating a picturesque landscape. Accessible via a short walk through lush trails, Halls Falls offers a tranquil retreat for nature lovers.


The peaceful ambiance, coupled with the soothing sounds of flowing water, makes it an idyllic spot to unwind and appreciate the untouched natural wonders that Derby and its surroundings have to offer.



Columba Falls, a majestic cascade nestled in the lush Tasmanian wilderness, captivates with its natural splendor and tranquil ambiance. Surrounded by ancient ferns and towering eucalyptus trees, the falls plunge approximately 90 meters, creating a mesmerizing spectacle as the water gracefully descends over rocky ledges. The viewing platform offers a perfect vantage point to witness the falls in all their glory, with misty sprays adding to the immersive experience. Whether visited as part of a scenic drive or a dedicated hiking expedition, Columba Falls stands as a testament to Tasmania's pristine beauty, providing a serene escape and an opportunity to connect with nature in its most awe-inspiring form.


Option 4 - A Taste of Local Hospitality


Pub in the paddock view with seating tables in nature
Credit: Tourism Australia

The Pub in the Paddock, located in Pyengana, Tasmania, is a charming and iconic establishment that seamlessly blends rustic charm with a unique, quirky atmosphere. Situated within a historic paddock, the pub gained fame for its resident beer-drinking pig named Priscilla, who became a local legend. The pub exudes a welcoming vibe, offering a menu featuring hearty pub fare and a selection of local beverages. Visitors can enjoy their meals in a cozy, country-style setting, complete with wooden interiors and a warm fireplace. The Pub in the Paddock isn't just a culinary stop; it's an immersive experience that combines Tasmanian hospitality, culinary delights, and a touch of whimsy, making it a must-visit destination for those seeking a delightful and offbeat pub experience in the heart of the Tasmanian countryside.

Pub in the Paddock Pig that loves beer to drink
Credit: Tourism Tasmania & Nick Osborne

Derby, Tasmania, is a haven for those seeking the perfect blend of adventure, relaxation, and natural beauty. Whether you're conquering the trails, unwinding in a sauna, or exploring the wonders of the surrounding rainforests and waterfalls, Derby promises an experience that will stay etched in your memory forever. Pack your bags, fellow travelers, and embark on a journey to this mountain biking paradise – Derby awaits!

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